One’s com­pany, two’s a crowd

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE -


One un­ex­pected re­sult of her suc­cess is that her fam­ily has stopped pres­sur­ing her to get mar­ried. “Now they can say: your daugh­ter is mar­ried, but mine has a book,” she joked.

Li Jie, a 32-year-old en­gi­neer who has lived alone in Shang­hai for four years, is a huge fan.

“Her videos are great. There are more and more sin­gle women like me and it’s nice to en­joy some food in peace by one­self,” she said.

Li hails from An­hui prov­ince, 600 kilo­me­ters from Shang­hai. Her par­ents found work in other cities af­ter they were laid off dur­ing the re­form of State-owned com­pa­nies in the 1990s, and Li was left with her grand­par­ents.

She added that’s why she has never found dining out alone awk­ward. “I have been alone from a very young age.”

Cai held a pic­nic-themed ex­hi­bi­tion last month. She set up tents and in­vited peo­ple to re­lax and en­joy free food, drink and cooking tips. She said she was over­whelmed by the re­sponse.

Her videos are not ex­clu­sively for sin­gles, but also for those who some­times just ap­pre­ci­ate their own com­pany.

Take episode 17, for ex­am­ple, in which a mar­ried man demon­strates how to make clay pot rice. In his case, the guy just likes mak­ing break­fast for him­self in the early morn­ing, while his wife prefers to sleep.

“In the end, we all have to eat alone at some point,” said Cai. “It sounds a bit sad, but even when you’re alone you should treat your­self to a good meal now and then.”


Cai Yani,

Cai Yani,

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